Tribal Nations

At the Department of Early Learning (DEL), we work with Tribal Nations to help ensure all children and families have access to early learning resources and information.

Here are a few ways that DEL supports and collaborates with Washington Tribes:

  • The DEL Tribal Liaison acts as the main point of contact for Tribal Nations. HSSCO Administrator Jennifer Jennings-Shaffer serves as DEL's Tribal Liaison.
  • The Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) has four sites operated by tribal organizations; Chief Leschi, Sauk Suiattle, Tulalip and Upper Skagit. In the 2007-2009 state budget biennium, ECEAP was expanded in communities that increased access for American Indian children. In 2012-2013 school year, there were 421 children being served who identified as American Indian/Alaska Native.
  • 20-hour and 10-hour STARS trainings are offered annually to tribal child care providers.
  • A Tribal certification process for child care licensing is available for Tribes.
  • Tribal Nations are represented and involved in large-scale, statewide projects including the redesign of the Washington State Early Learning and Development Guidelines, the Head Start/ECEAP Early Achievers project, and Washington's home visiting system.
  • DEL funds parent support and education projects that provide hands-on parent-child activities, parent education and family support services.
  • DEL sponsors Tribal Early Care and Education Conferences for early learning professionals who work with Tribal children and families. These conferences take place every other year; the next is scheduled for Summer 2014.
Centennial Accord Plan

An overview of the Centennial Accord and the process for developing the Centennial Accord plan between DEL and Tribal Nations.
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Tribal Certification Process

An overview of the process for certifying Tribal child care.
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Tribal Care and Education Conference

DEL sponsors conferences for those who work with Tribal children and families.
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